I started my Taekwondo journey just a few months ago back in November at Jenks Martial Arts Academy (JMAA). As you all know I'm always looking for ways to grow and challenge myself. I've done races, including a couple half marathons, I've done boxing and participated in an open sparring event, and so I figured why not Taekwondo. It's something that would challenge me physically, as well as mentally, and with the various ranks of belts I've always got something to works towards.
When I first started telling people about signing up for this class, as usual I had a lot of support from my trainers at Fitness Together, friends, and family; but as usual I had that handful of people who had something negative to say. The three comments that really stood out were....
- "You're crazy. You already workout too much."
- "Aren't you too old to start something like that?"
- "What made you decide to take that class? It's going to be hard."
This past weekend in Newton, Kansas our school competed in the Kansas State Martial Arts Championships. When our chief instructor, and owner of JMAA, Mr. Dunham started talking about this tournament I didn't think much about it. But, then thought it might be a good idea to go watch so when I am ready to compete I'll know what to expect. So, I asked Mr. Dunham if I could go and watch and he said, "Absolutely!" And then he gives me that sly grin and says, "Or, you could go and compete." Hmm...not sure about that, I've only been doing this for a few months. But, as usual, I meditated on it and thought this is the reason I started this journey. This is what I need to get out of my comfort zone and challenge myself. So I decided to go and compete. I wasn't expecting to place in anything, but just knowing the experience alone would help me grow and learn. I ended up competing in three events and I ended up placing in all three in my divisions.
The first competition I did was for my pattern/form technique. I placed third in this event and I believe that helped me be more confident in the other two events. The second event I participated in was The Ultimate Striker where I placed first. And the final event was one point sparring where I also placed first!
This experience was so amazing and I had so much fun! Afterwards on the drive home I thought about, not only what all I've accomplished in the last seven years since starting my health and fitness journey, but all that I wouldn't have accomplished had I allowed those negative people and comments to discourage me from going after the goals I want to attain.
To address those three comments about my Taekwondo journey....
- I'm not crazy, nor do I workout too much. I'm just determined to be better than I was yesterday.
- No I'm not too old. I'm not too old to accomplish any goal I set my mind to as long as I don't allow myself to get inside my own head with the negative thoughts.
- I decided to take this class because I needed something to get me out of my comfort zone and challenge myself. And if I'm not setting goals that will be hard then I'm not challenging myself, nor will I be able to grow and improve physically, emotionally, or mentally.